One of the region’s most popular theatres has benefited from a generous donation from one of the world’s biggest manufacturers of paint.

The Customs House in South Shields, currently celebrating its 25th anniversary, gratefully received a donation of over 300 litres of Dulux paint [116 tins] from AkzoNobel Ashington to help towards Phase 1 of its refurbishment programme.

AkzoNobel heard about the amazing work The Customs House does to support local community groups, charities and non-for-profit organisations, who depend on the theatre as a vital meeting place. The paint is being used in the renovation of the public space areas from front of house through to the community meeting rooms.

Alex Wardle, Process Engineer at AkzoNobel Ashington, said: “We are thrilled to support The Customs House as they play an integral role in the local community and mirror our own responsibility to create inspiring living spaces for people to enjoy.

“We were proud to find out that our gesture helped to encourage five other local businesses to follow suit and donate towards the cause. We are happy in the knowledge all of the visitors and patrons using the theatre will benefit from the donated materials and the building will look amazing for years to come.”

Since opening its flagship manufacturing site in Ashington in 2017, AkzoNobel has been committed to bringing colour into people’s lives through a variety of community engagement projects showing the world AkzoNobel Cares.

Different social impact programmes and projects under AkzoNobel Cares, like the one at The Custom House, deliver positive impact on the local community.

AkzoNobel believes in the power of paint to transform lives by uplifting communities, changing behaviour and making living spaces more fun, inspiring and enjoyable.

The Customs House welcomes almost a million visitors a year through the doors of its thriving riverside building, which houses a 439-seater theatre, 145 seated studio/cinema, a busy restaurant and gallery space. The theatre puts on over 300 shows a year including plays, musicals and comedy.

Ray Spencer MBE, Executive Director of The Customs House, said: “We are absolutely delighted that AkzoNobel was able to support The Customs House in its 25th anniversary year. It certainly has an impact to our visitors and artists coming into our building to see such a bright and welcoming foyer thanks to the company’s contribution.”

For more information about AkzoNobel and its range of products please visit and likewise please visit for details about The Customs House.